Wastewater from the food and drink sector typically contains high concentrations of biodegradable organic matter. These pollutants are challenging to filter out of sewage systems and can contaminate natural water bodies. Many industrial processes to treat industrial effluents carrying organic matter are optimised for large factories, where economies of scale make vast technology investments affordable. In contrast, the food and drink sector is dominated by small and medium-sized enterprises who do not discharge enough wastewater for existing anaerobic digestion reactors to prove economically viable. Cheaper reactors could help food and drink companies use water resources in a safer and more efficient manner, as set out in the EU Water Framework Directive, and save natural resources, as described in the Industrial Emissions Directive.